Ex Xiaomi Global Vice President Hugo Barra will join Facebook to lead its virtual reality endeavors. The announcement arrives via a Facebook post from CEO Mark Zuckerberg and follows just three days after Barra announced his resignation from Xiaomi.
“Hugo shares my belief that virtual and augmented reality will be the next major computing platform,” wrote Zuckerberg. “They’ll enable us to experience completely new things and be more creative than ever before. Hugo is going to help build that future.”
The Facebook post included an animated image of Barra and
Justin Timberlake Zuckerberg sitting side-by-side in what appears to be the Facebook offices. It features the same style as the digital avatars Facebook showed off at its Oculus Connect conference last year.
“Hugo’s in China right now,” wrote Zuckerberg. “So here we are together in VR. It seems fitting.”
Barra previously worked at Google supporting its Android efforts before leaving to help build Xiaomi’s international reputation from Beijing. He joined in 2013, in a year which saw Xiaomi sell an estimated 18.7 million smartphones. In 2015, Xiaomi confirmed 70 million smartphone sales.
Announcing his split with Xiaomi, Barra said the “singular environment” had taken a huge toll on his life and health and that he wanted to be back in Silicon valley near family and friends.